County votes to give sheriff money for vehiclesBy Emily Reed Published 4:32pm Tuesday, November 26, 2013
After hearing from Chilton County Sheriff Kevin Davis regarding high mileage on many of the vehicles in his department, the county commission voted Monday to give Davis $100,000 to purchase more vehicles.
Davis presented commissioners on Monday with several handouts regarding the purchase of new vehicles for his department and a listing of his current vehicle fleet.
“I am asking for whatever money you have budgeted for vehicles,” Davis said. “Twenty-four out of 34 vehicles have more than 110,000 miles on them. The sooner we can get vehicles the better off we will be.”
Commission chairman Allen Caton asked commissioners if they would like to consider a leasing option that would enable Davis to purchase more cars with the $100,000.
“He can get about three cars with $100,000 without leasing them,” Caton said. “If we leased some vehicles, he could get maybe seven cars but that leasing plan will be for about two years.”
Commissioner Heedy Hayes voiced concerns with the leasing option due to not knowing how much money would be in the commission’s budget for the next fiscal year.
“How do we know we will have $100,000 for next year if he leases these cars?” Hayes asked. “We don’t know if we will have that money next year.”
Commissioner Bobby Agee suggested coming up with a plan to make arrangements for Davis to get five new cars each year.
“Instead of giving him seven cars with a leasing option, we could come up with a way to give him five cars this year and keep some of that money in reserve for next year,” Agee said. “Then we could use that money we have in reserve plus whatever other money we would have and give him five cars each year.”
Davis said he was concerned with the reliability of some of the cars with high mileage being used in high-speed pursuits.
“We put our best vehicles in our patrol,” Davis said. “I don’t want someone in a patrol car traveling at a high rate of speed in an unreliable car.”
Davis asked the commission to give him permission to purchase four vehicles with his department coming up with the rest of the funds for the fourth car.
“If you decide you don’t want to lease more than four vehicles then I will at least have four I have purchased,” Davis said. “Let me order the four cars tomorrow and if you decide to go with a leasing option we can go back and order two or three more. If we wait another month or two to decide then we will be in bad shape.”
Commissioner Greg Moore made the motion to commit $100,000 from the commission’s budget with Davis finishing out the remainder of the money.
Commissioners Joe Headley, Hayes, Shannon Welch, Caton and Agee unanimously voted in favor of the motion.